Nate Freiman (

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By Scott Barancik, editor

Oakland A’s 1B Nate Freiman was named American League Rookie of the Month after hitting .351 with one HR, three doubles, nine RBIs, and a .928 OPS (on-base plus slugging percentage) in May. Through yesterday’s games (6/3/2013), the 26-year-old Duke University alum ranked 2nd among A.L. rookies with 15 RBIs and a .350 on-base percentage, and third with a .793 OPS, all in only 70 at-bats.

The honor shows just how far Freiman has come despite adversity. After starring for Team Israel in the 2012 World Baseball Classic qualifiers, the 6-foot-8-inch slugger was picked up by the Houston Astros in the Rule 5 draft after the San Diego Padres left him unprotected. When the Astros placed him on waivers, Oakland stepped in. Freiman’s success so far in the Majors is all the more special since he has never played a day of Triple-A ball.

His June is off to a solid start, too. Freiman, who plays understudy to fellow first baseman Brandon Moss, is 2-for-7 with his first MLB triple (see video).

Jewish Baseball News thanks Jack W. for the tip.

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